To know what Reverend Horton Heat is, you have to know rockabilly, the genre of music arising out of direct lineage to the rock 'n' roll, country and R&B of the '50s.
Amos Lee is a hard man to put a label on. Right down to his name (it's a stage name), his genre -- an eclectic mix of rock, R&B, country and folk -- and his songs -- equal parts funky and soulful, serious and playful.
Among the legends of bluegrass, there are few living with accomplishments that equal Dr. Ralph Stanley.
From the Greek, "phenomena" means, "to show, shine, appear, to be manifest (or manifest itself)" -- an occurrence that is a given, a force of nature that becomes the object of a person's attention.
A few months ago I got a call from a friend who invited me to a "fun" concert at the Peabody with the Joy Formidable, a band I'd seen before at the Firebird and the Luminary and really enjoyed. I immediately said yes and penciled in the date.
There's irony in the fact that what most people know about the band Nada Surf is that they once had a mainstream hit in the '90s by the name of "Popular" -- and that's about it.
The story of Flogging Molly begins not in an Irish bar in Dublin but at an Irish-American local scene in Los Angeles.
Why do I even care what a few strangers from Kentucky think of a St. Louis crowd? Why would it bother me when one of them tells me about the Blind Pilot show they attended earlier in the tour at Headliners in Louisville?
As a rule, I'm a comparative thinker. As a writer, I construct parallels and employ juxtaposition all the time. As a critic, I see comparison as a means towards a more accurate definition.